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The archives section of the Special Collections & Archives appraises, collects, organizes describes, makes available and preserves records of historic value created by Ricks College and its successor BYU-Idaho. This includes both published and unpublished materials concerning the university, as well as papers of faculty, and the permanent records of the colleges and departments that make up the university.

The archives play an important role in the university's records management program as well. It maintains the records retention schedule and helps colleges and departments that participate in the program determine which records are permanent and how and when to properly dispose of those which are not. As a part of this it operates the confidential recycling program in order to responsibly dispose of records that contain private information. In addition to its advisory function, the archives provide secure storage and reference services for non-current records transferred to it.

The archives and its staff is a source for information concerning the historical development of BYU-Idaho.

The archives endeavors to help the university meet its goals by providing information that the faculty and staff needs to carry out its duties. In addition, it seeks to aid students, and researchers interested in the history of the institution.

The archives' first priority is to serve the colleges and departments of the university. Some of the materials in the archives are restricted because of the right to privacy and administrative reasons and are not available to students or the public. Therefore, it is a good idea to telephone prior to visiting the archives in order to check if the material you want to see is available.

The archives contain the institutional memory of the university. In a very real sense, it is helping to "preserve the spirit of Ricks" as the transition to BYU-Idaho goes forward.